3 Fresh Baking Trends For 2018
We like trends here at The Country Oven. While we got our start on family recipes handed down through past generations, we love the fact that new ideas are taking baked goods into the future.
It's exciting to start thinking about what's up and coming in the baking industry, and how we can get on board. What's new this year? Here are 3 fresh baking trends for 2018:
1. Food-to-go Consumers like anything on-the-go, and bakeries are starting to pick up on the trend. Pop-up
experiences are one way for them to bring baked goods to the people in 2018. The National Restaurant Association defines pop-up dining as "mini-restaurants that temporarily operate in parks, plazas, galleries, warehouses, event centers and larger restaurants." Pop-up bakeries and restaurants use blogs, Twitter and other social networks to inform people about the upcoming events.
Food trucks and delivery services are other ways for bakeries to capitalize on mobile lifestyles by bringing bakery to the people, wherever they are. Morsels Baking Co. in Orange County, California, for example, is a traveling bakery that caters private events and offers fundraising opportunities for schools and other groups.
2. Gluten-free and plant-based
People are becoming gluten-free, vegan and/or dairy-free in unprecedented numbers, most by choice rather than necessity. But whatever their motivation, these consumers are making their voices heard. Improvements in gluten-free flour blends and better understanding of suitable substitutions have inspired recipes that are not only tasty but healthy--and supportive of environmental concerns.
Look for pastries that feature everything from plant-based milks such as coconut, olive and sesame oils to egg substitutes such as flax gel, chia seeds and tofu.
3. Local Flavors
Local is hot in 2018, and renewed interest in patronizing local businesses (as opposed to national/regional chain stores) is driving the artisanal food industry. Support for the neighborhood bakery results in local flavors inspired by their geographical areas, opening up opportunities to celebrate community. Specialties made with locally-sourced ingredients, inspired by the tastes and traditions of the local population, are the new order of the day,
Dominique Ansel Bakery in New York City (credited with the invention of the croissant-doughnut hybrid known as the cronut) is one neighborhood bakery that keeps its finger on the pulse of its customers. Sweet and savory items such as Strawberry Rhubarb and Thyme Ganache, peanut butter meringue and fruit sorbets coated in chocolate reflect eclectic local tastes.
Consumers in 2018 are open to new ideas. So this year, bakeries are really only limited by their resources and the imaginations of those running them. Our advice? Pay attention to what your local bakeries are doing. Better yet, help set the trends that are taking these neighborhood patisseries into the future. After all, what could be more fun than finding yourself in the middle of a pop-up dining experience?